Jason Stratham is an agent constantly assigned to deliver any packages to anyone desired. A transporter who zips about town pretty quickly, something like New York cab drivers, his one exception is that he knows where he's headed. Give him an address in Nice or Marseilles or Grenoble and he'll take your package there, no questions asked. So naturally, one day, he decides to ask questions, wondering about what one of his packages contains, and that's when the fun begins.
A duffel bag turns out to bear a sexy Chinese woman, Lai (Shu Qi), and she soon makes an honest man out of him as women tend to do. Our transporter not only drives BMWs and Mercedes, but is at ease hijacking a private plane, swimming in the deep, repelling a missile with a silver tray, dodging Uzi-style bullets and even bazooka shells, his desire to live fueled by Shu Qi's character Lai.
The Transporter is one of those films you go to strictly for the action. The dialog is nearly non-existent. There're logic holes throughout the storyline and occasionally the laws of physics are stretched, but the action is excellent, and that's what this movie is about. The
opening chase scene is the highlight of the film.
If you have seen a lot of Jean Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren or Michael Dudikoff movies, then you will like this one to a point. Even lovers of Van Damme movies will admit that they don't watch those flicks for cerebral enlightenment - it's an adrenaline escape. The Transporter runs into problems when the film loses the plot and it becomes a sort of ping-pong match between hero and villain.
The acting in Transporter is decent, but really, as long as nothing is atrociously bad in the acting department these trips can still be worth it for the most part. Qi Shu's acting (the delivery package) leaves a little to be desired, and it is hard to decode her English - when she does get the chance to speak, that is. Her character has a piece of duct tape over her mouth for most of the film. This is not to say she is not a good actress, but her lack of lines makes her character - whose loyalties are a bit confusing from the start - seem a little dimwitted.
Stratham, though, suffers from none of that malaise. He proves that he is a legitimate challenger to the crown many pundits believe will rest on the head of Van Diesel. The acting performances from the rest of the cast do not really merit a mention, since they are strictly in the run-of-the-mill category.
The Transporter supplies a decent flow of entertainment for the eyes and the ears, but fails to capture a level of excitement that is overly memorable. The action in the movie is well choreographed, although the plot is not sustainable even for the couple of hours you are in the theater. Some of the ending notes are very Indiana Jones-rip off type. I did like how the bad guys actually took the time to paint shark faces on their missiles before launching them into Statham's home, though - it's nice to know that some evil-doers take that extra pleasure in their work.